Arms spread, smile wide and with the glorious Swiss Alps as her backdrop, Diane Sawyer launched her 20/20 ‘Sound of Music’ anniversary special on March 18 with a recreation of the movie’s iconic opening scene.

Marveling at the hordes of tourists still visiting its landmarks 50 years later, Diane noted the uplifting film “shaped a message about courage, choosing hope even when your life gets hard.”

diane sawyer and mike nichols

Diane with her late husband in October 2014.

It’s a sentiment Diane has taken to heart herself during these past few painful months. On Nov. 19, just weeks after the death of her mother, Jean, the veteran journalist lost her beloved husband of 26 years, legendary director Mike Nichols, to a sudden heart attack at age 83.

Related: Diane Sawyer to Return to ‘ABC World News’

Since that terrible shock, she’s leaned on family and friends, finding comfort in her work and trying to keep her head up. But it hasn’t been easy. Waking up alone in the NYC apartment they used to share has been painful.

mike nicols and diane sawyer

Diane with Mike in June 2012.

After Diane, 69, stepped down from her post as ‘ABC World News’ anchor in August, she and Mike started having coffee together every morning for the first time in their married lives. Now “mornings
are hard for Diane, not having her husband she loved so much sitting across the table from her,” the friend says.

To read the full story on Diane, pick up the new issue of ‘Closer Weekly,’ on newsstands now!